WASHINGTON - Alexander Ovechkin has scored his 50th goal of the season - and then some.
The Capitals star scored on a breakaway 6:18 into Washington's game against the Boston Bruins on Monday, becoming the first NHLer to reach the 50-goal plateau this season.
He then added his 51st goal a mere 50 seconds later, and potted his 52nd with 4:29 left in the first period for his fifth career hat trick.
It's the second time the Russian sniper has reached the 50-goal mark after scoring 52 in his rookie season in 2005-06.
It took Ovechkin 67 games to reach 50 this season.
He now has a legitimate shot at reaching 60 goals, something no NHL player has achieved since Mario Lemieux had 69 for the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1995-96.